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This profile was last updated on 6/30/09  and contains information from public web pages.

Mr. Damon Joseph West

Wrong Damon Joseph West?

Starting Quarterback

Arizona State
 
Background

Employment History

Education

  • degree , sociology
    University of North Texas
9 Total References
Web References
How did Damon West, one-time ...
bhcjournal.com, 30 June 2009 [cached]
How did Damon West, one-time football star who led Uptown burglary ring, sink so far?
...
Jun. 28--When the Dallas Cowboys went to training camp in Austin back in the early '90s, Damon West went, too -- a high school quarterback from Port Arthur working out after practice under the tutelage of Cowboys assistant coach Norv Turner.
Smart, charming and confident, West seemed to have everything going for him, for football and for life.
But behind that promising veneer, West dealt with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, lingering insecurities from his parents' separation when he was a boy, psychological scars from being sexually molested by a female babysitter, and a history of alcohol and drug abuse that began in elementary school.
Now 33, with football a memory and his political aspirations gone, West was sentenced to 65 years in prison two months ago for engaging in organized crime -- leading the burglary ring accused of breaking into at least 51 apartments in Dallas' Uptown neighborhood, sampling their victims' food, trying on their clothes, even bunking in before finally hauling away their loot.
He declined to be interviewed for this story, although he professed his innocence to reporters after his arrest a year ago.
...
In the early 1990s in Port Arthur, Damon West was a golden boy, the quarterback for the Thomas Jefferson High School Yellow Jackets.
West wasn't the most gifted athlete his coach, Mike Owens, had ever seen.
...
During football season, Damon joined his dad on trips to cover the team, often handling the cord to Johnson's headset as the coach prowled the sidelines.
"That was a big deal for a kid -- the camera zeroes in on the head coach, and there's Damon," his father said.
Johnson remembered Damon West as being "energetic, and a hard worker."
...
Damon played well enough as a high school junior that colleges from around the country began tracking his performance.
...
West received two scholarship offers, his dad said -- from UNT, where Todd Dodge, another Jefferson High alumnus and now the Mean Green's head coach, was quarterback coach; and Southwest Texas State, now Texas State in San Marcos.
...
The brightest point came in September 1996, when West was named starting quarterback for UNT's game at Arizona State. He'd be going against ASU's heralded Jake "The Snake" Plummer. And in the week leading up to the game, he received an encouraging telegram from Johnson, then coaching the Miami Dolphins; and a fax from Turner, then head coach of the Washington Redskins.
Outmanned, UNT lost 52-7. West threw for a touchdown, but also tossed an interception that went for an Arizona State touchdown and lost a fumble, again returned for a touchdown.
The next week, he lasted only three plays against Texas A&M before separating his shoulder. Some months later, while rehabilitating that injury, West partially severed his Achilles tendon.
He'd never play football again.
And no longer under the scrutiny of his coaches, West gained a reputation as a hard-drinking party boy and a user of cocaine.
A student who knew West at UNT said that even then, West was prone to steal. While working at a menswear store in Grapevine, he'd stuff suits into a trash bag, toss it in the dumpster, then recover the bag when his shift ended, said the ex-student, who asked that his name not be used, fearing reprisals.
West would wear the suits himself, sell them or give them to friends.
But if West had alcohol or drug problems, some of those closest to him then say they never knew it.
Bill Michael, then an assistant football coach at UNT, said he'd be hard-pressed to believe anything negative about West during his playing days.
...
His first foray into the field came in 1998, in the Denton mayoral election, when businessman Scott Finfer hired West as his campaign manager.
...
"He seemed like a smart, nice kid," said Finfer, who hired West even before he'd graduated.
...
His parents separated when Damon was about 8, Crowder said, and his father left the family home.
...
"They had a very close bond then, but for Damon, there would have been a degree of lingering insecurity and wondering when the relationships might break apart again," he said. "Damon thought, 'If I can't perform for him, I really don't have a place in his life.' "
...
After graduating from the University of North Texas in 1999 with a degree in sociology, West went to Washington, D.C., working for a Democratic fundraising firm and for U.S. Rep.
...
Mauro first met West in 1991 in Port Arthur, at a roast for Jimmy Johnson organized by Bob West.
...
"To make a long story short, it was Damon and he wanted advice on Texas politics and getting involved.
"He wanted to come back to Texas and work on a presidential campaign. He said, 'Who are you working for?' and I told him Dick Gephardt. So he went and met Gephardt's people and came to work in Texas."
Mauro and West worked elbow-to-elbow in Mauro's home office for more than six months until Gephardt ended his campaign.
...
"Damon took on the role of father figure, mentor, and one night his brother got in trouble for partying too much and Damon got on him.
...
Damon drifted up to Dallas in 2004, bringing his methamphetamine habit with him. He told a former girlfriend that he started using the drug in Austin, after he returned to Texas from Washington.
When they met in 2007, he was still using.
...
"I'm not going to say Damon was a straight-arrow all of his life," Bob West said.
...
But about a year after Damon moved to Dallas, "we could tell that something was haywire," Bob West said.
...
"Damon is a very smart guy.
...
Authorities who have dealt with West since his arrest say that while drugs were a big part of his problem, a clean and sober West is still manipulative -- and dangerous. They note that four months after his arrest, he was trying to persuade one of his brothers, who lives out of state, to come to Dallas, get some stolen goods out of a warehouse and take them to their parents' Port Arthur home.
And his former girlfriend said that authorities have taped phone calls West made to her from jail in which he told her not to talk to police or prosecutors about him and if she did, to lie.
"I've met a lot of the victims in this," she said, "and if I feel sorry for anyone, I feel sorry for them."
...
The ex-girlfriend thinks of a younger Damon, too.
He told her how his mother caught him having sex with his babysitter when he was 10 years old, and how, shortly thereafter, he turned to drugs and alcohol.
"I think he's still that 10-year-old kid who's suffering," she said.
When the Dallas Cowboys went to ...
www.dentonrc.com, 28 June 2009 [cached]
When the Dallas Cowboys went to training camp in Austin in the early 1990s, Damon West went, too - a high school quarterback from Port Arthur working out after practice under the tutelage of Cowboys assistant coach Norv Turner.
Courtesy photo Courtesy photo Damon West, left, stands on the sidelines with Dallas Cowboy Kenny Gant and head coach Jimmy Johnson during the Cowboys' loss to the Houston Oilers on Nov. 10, 1991, at the Astrodome in Houston.
...
West, who went on to start at quarterback for the University of North Texas, was recently sentenced to 65 years in prison for his role in a burglary ring. View largerMore photosPhoto store
Smart, charming and confident, West seemed to have everything going for him - in football and in life.
But behind that promising veneer, West dealt with attention deficit hyperactive disorder, lingering insecurities from his parents' separation when he was a boy, psychological scars from being sexually molested by a female babysitter, and a history of alcohol and drug abuse that began in elementary school.
Now 33, with football a memory and his political aspirations gone, West was sentenced to 65 years in prison for engaging in organized crime - leading a burglary ring accused of breaking into at least 51 apartments in Dallas' Uptown neighborhood, sampling their victims' food, trying on their clothes, even bunking in before finally hauling away their loot.
He declined to be interviewed for this story, although he professed his innocence to reporters after his arrest a year ago.
...
In the early '90s in Port Arthur, Damon West was a golden boy, the quarterback for the Thomas Jefferson High School Yellow Jackets.
West wasn't the most gifted athlete his coach, Mike Owens, had ever seen.
...
During football season, Damon joined his dad on trips to cover the Cowboys, often handling the cord to Johnson's headset as the coach prowled the sidelines.
"That was a big deal for a kid - the camera zeroes in on the head coach, and there's Damon," his father said.
Johnson remembers Damon West as being "energetic and a hard worker."
...
Damon played well enough as a high school junior that colleges around the country began tracking his performance.
...
West received two scholarship offers, his dad said - from the University of North Texas, where Todd Dodge, another Jefferson High alumnus and now the Mean Green's head coach, was quarterbacks coach; and Southwest Texas State, now Texas State, in San Marcos.
...
The brightest point came in September 1996, when West was named starting quarterback for UNT's game at Arizona State.
...
West threw for a touchdown but also tossed an interception that went for an Arizona State touchdown and lost a fumble - again returned for a touchdown.
The next week, he lasted only three plays against Texas A&M before separating his shoulder. Months later, while rehabilitating that injury, West partially severed his Achilles tendon.
He'd never play football again.
And no longer under the scrutiny of his coaches, West gained a reputation as a hard-drinking party boy and a user of cocaine.
A student who knew West at UNT said that even then, West was prone to steal. While working at a menswear store in Grapevine, he'd stuff suits into a trash bag, toss it in the dumpster, then recover the bag when his shift ended, said the ex-student, who asked that his name not be used, fearing reprisals.
West would wear the suits himself, sell them or give them to friends.
But if West had alcohol or drug problems, some of those closest to him say they never knew it.
Bill Michael, then an assistant coach at UNT, said he'd be hard-pressed to believe anything negative about West during his playing days.
...
His first foray into the field came in 1998 in the Denton mayoral election, when businessman Scott Finfer hired West as his campaign manager.
...
"He seemed like a smart, nice kid," said Finfer, who hired West before he'd graduated.
...
His parents separated when Damon was about 8, Crowder said, and his father left the family home.
...
"They had a very close bond then, but for Damon there would have been a degree of lingering insecurity and wondering when the relationships might break apart again," he said. "Damon thought, 'If I can't perform for him, I really don't have a place in his life.'"
...
Damon West speaks from jail after being arrested on suspicion of running a Dallas burglary ring. West was recently sentenced to 65 years in prison.
...
After graduating from UNT in 1999 with a degree in sociology, West went to Washington, working for a Democratic fundraising firm and for U.S. Rep.
...
Mauro first met West in 1991 in Port Arthur, at a roast for Jimmy Johnson organized by Bob West.
...
"It was Damon, and he wanted advice on Texas politics and getting involved.
"He wanted to come back to Texas and work on a presidential campaign. He said, 'Who are you working for?' and I told him Dick Gephardt. So he went and met Gephardt's people and came to work in Texas."
Mauro and West worked elbow-to-elbow in Mauro's home office for more than six months until Gephardt ended his campaign.
...
"Damon took on the role of father figure, mentor, and one night his brother got in trouble for partying too much and Damon got on him.
...
Damon drifted up to Dallas in 2004, taking his methamphetamine habit with him. He told his then-girlfriend that he started using the drug in Austin, after he returned to Texas from Washington.
When they met in 2007, he was still using.
...
"I'm not going to say Damon was a straight-arrow all of his life," Bob West said.
...
But about a year after Damon moved to Dallas, "we could tell that something was haywire," Bob West said.
...
"Damon is a very smart guy.
...
Authorities who have dealt with West since his arrest say that while drugs were a big part of his problem, a clean and sober West is still manipulative - and dangerous. They note that four months after his arrest, he was trying to persuade one of his brothers, who lives out of state, to come to Dallas, get some stolen goods out of a warehouse and take the stuff to their parents' Port Arthur home.
His former girlfriend said that authorities have taped phone calls West made to her from jail in which he told her to not talk to police or prosecutors about him - and if she did, to lie.
"I've met a lot of the victims in this," she said, "and if I feel sorry for anyone, I feel sorry for them."
...
The ex-girlfriend thinks of a younger Damon, too.
He told her how his mother caught him having sex with his babysitter when he was 10 years old and how, shortly thereafter, he turned to drugs and alcohol.
"I think he's still that 10-year-old kid who's suffering," she said.
Damon West is a former ...
www.txcn.com, 12 Oct 2008 [cached]
Damon West is a former quarterback for the University of North Texas and son of a sports columnist for the Port Arthur News - an unusual background for a suspect in Uptown's high-profile string of burglaries this summer.
Yet court records detail an elaborate case against Mr. West and three others: a friend, a roommate and a landlord.They're accused of being in a crime ring in which at least $150,000 in property was stolen from more than 30 residences to be fenced for cash or illegal drugs.
...
Mr. West, 32, says he's innocent.
"I don't claim to walk between raindrops," he told WFAA-TV (Channel 8) last month.
...
It said Mr. Kienzlen paid cash to rent an apartment on Holland Avenue in Oak Lawn, near where Mr. West lived.
...
"I want my name off that lease," said a message purportedly from Mr. Kienzlen to Mr. West.
...
Mr. West's roommate, 28-year-old Virginia Oates, turned herself in on Oct. 1.
...
A witness - a close friend of both Ms. Oates and Mr. West - told police that before they became roommates, Mr. West traded stolen goods for drugs.
...
Mr. West has a pending drug case from 2007 - alleging possession of methamphetamine - and was arrested May 22 while driving a stolen vehicle, Dallas police say.
...
Since then, prosecutors have decided to exclude items found during a search of Mr. West's home because the search affidavit - created by Detective Walton - may not have contained enough probable cause, or underlying facts, to justify the search.
How did Damon West, one-time ...
www.dallasnews.com, 28 June 2009 [cached]
How did Damon West, one-time football star who led Uptown burglary ring, sink so far?
...
When the Dallas Cowboys went to training camp in Austin back in the early '90s, Damon West went, too - a high school quarterback from Port Arthur working out after practice under the tutelage of Cowboys assistant coach Norv Turner.
Smart, charming and confident, West seemed to have everything going for him, for football and for life.
But behind that promising veneer, West dealt with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, lingering insecurities from his parents' separation when he was a boy, psychological scars from being sexually molested by a female babysitter, and a history of alcohol and drug abuse that began in elementary school.
Now 33, with football a memory and his political aspirations gone, West was sentenced to 65 years in prison two months ago for engaging in organized crime - leading the burglary ring accused of breaking into at least 51 apartments in Dallas' Uptown neighborhood, sampling their victims' food, trying on their clothes, even bunking in before finally hauling away their loot.
He declined to be interviewed for this story, although he professed his innocence to reporters after his arrest a year ago.
...
In the early 1990s in Port Arthur, Damon West was a golden boy, the quarterback for the Thomas Jefferson High School Yellow Jackets.
West wasn't the most gifted athlete his coach, Mike Owens, had ever seen.
...
During football season, Damon joined his dad on trips to cover the team, often handling the cord to Johnson's headset as the coach prowled the sidelines.
"That was a big deal for a kid - the camera zeroes in on the head coach, and there's Damon," his father said.
Johnson remembered Damon West as being "energetic, and a hard worker."
...
Damon played well enough as a high school junior that colleges from around the country began tracking his performance.
...
West received two scholarship offers, his dad said - from UNT, where Todd Dodge, another Jefferson High alumnus and now the Mean Green's head coach, was quarterback coach; and Southwest Texas State, now Texas State in San Marcos.
...
The brightest point came in September 1996, when West was named starting quarterback for UNT's game at Arizona State. He'd be going against ASU's heralded Jake "The Snake" Plummer. And in the week leading up to the game, he received an encouraging telegram from Johnson, then coaching the Miami Dolphins; and a fax from Turner, then head coach of the Washington Redskins.
Outmanned, UNT lost 52-7. West threw for a touchdown, but also tossed an interception that went for an Arizona State touchdown and lost a fumble, again returned for a touchdown.
The next week, he lasted only three plays against Texas A&M before separating his shoulder. Some months later, while rehabilitating that injury, West partially severed his Achilles tendon.
He'd never play football again.
And no longer under the scrutiny of his coaches, West gained a reputation as a hard-drinking party boy and a user of cocaine.
A student who knew West at UNT said that even then, West was prone to steal. While working at a menswear store in Grapevine, he'd stuff suits into a trash bag, toss it in the dumpster, then recover the bag when his shift ended, said the ex-student, who asked that his name not be used, fearing reprisals.
West would wear the suits himself, sell them or give them to friends.
But if West had alcohol or drug problems, some of those closest to him then say they never knew it.
Bill Michael, then an assistant football coach at UNT, said he'd be hard-pressed to believe anything negative about West during his playing days.
...
His first foray into the field came in 1998, in the Denton mayoral election, when businessman Scott Finfer hired West as his campaign manager.
...
"He seemed like a smart, nice kid," said Finfer, who hired West even before he'd graduated.
...
His parents separated when Damon was about 8, Crowder said, and his father left the family home.
...
"They had a very close bond then, but for Damon, there would have been a degree of lingering insecurity and wondering when the relationships might break apart again," he said. "Damon thought, 'If I can't perform for him, I really don't have a place in his life.' "
...
After graduating from the University of North Texas in 1999 with a degree in sociology, West went to Washington, D.C., working for a Democratic fundraising firm and for U.S. Rep.
...
Mauro first met West in 1991 in Port Arthur, at a roast for Jimmy Johnson organized by Bob West.
...
"To make a long story short, it was Damon and he wanted advice on Texas politics and getting involved.
"He wanted to come back to Texas and work on a presidential campaign. He said, 'Who are you working for?' and I told him Dick Gephardt. So he went and met Gephardt's people and came to work in Texas."
Mauro and West worked elbow-to-elbow in Mauro's home office for more than six months until Gephardt ended his campaign.
...
"Damon took on the role of father figure, mentor, and one night his brother got in trouble for partying too much and Damon got on him.
...
Damon drifted up to Dallas in 2004, bringing his methamphetamine habit with him. He told a former girlfriend that he started using the drug in Austin, after he returned to Texas from Washington.
When they met in 2007, he was still using.
...
"I'm not going to say Damon was a straight-arrow all of his life," Bob West said.
...
But about a year after Damon moved to Dallas, "we could tell that something was haywire," Bob West said.
...
"Damon is a very smart guy.
...
Authorities who have dealt with West since his arrest say that while drugs were a big part of his problem, a clean and sober West is still manipulative - and dangerous. They note that four months after his arrest, he was trying to persuade one of his brothers, who lives out of state, to come to Dallas, get some stolen goods out of a warehouse and take them to their parents' Port Arthur home.
And his former girlfriend said that authorities have taped phone calls West made to her from jail in which he told her not to talk to police or prosecutors about him and if she did, to lie.
"I've met a lot of the victims in this," she said, "and if I feel sorry for anyone, I feel sorry for them."
...
The ex-girlfriend thinks of a younger Damon, too.
He told her how his mother caught him having sex with his babysitter when he was 10 years old, and how, shortly thereafter, he turned to drugs and alcohol.
"I think he's still that 10-year-old kid who's suffering," she said.
...
How did Damon West, one-time football star who led Uptown burglary ring, sink so far?
When the Dallas Cowboys went to ...
www.txcn.com, 28 June 2009 [cached]
When the Dallas Cowboys went to training camp in Austin back in the early '90s, Damon West went, too - a high school quarterback from Port Arthur working out after practice under the tutelage of Cowboys assistant coach Norv Turner.
Smart, charming and confident, West seemed to have everything going for him, for football and for life.
But behind that promising veneer, West dealt with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, lingering insecurities from his parents' separation when he was a boy, psychological scars from being sexually molested by a female babysitter, and a history of alcohol and drug abuse that began in elementary school.
Now 33, with football a memory and his political aspirations gone, West was sentenced to 65 years in prison two months ago for engaging in organized crime - leading the burglary ring accused of breaking into at least 51 apartments in Dallas' Uptown neighborhood, sampling their victims' food, trying on their clothes, even bunking in before finally hauling away their loot.
He declined to be interviewed for this story, although he professed his innocence to reporters after his arrest a year ago.
...
In the early 1990s in Port Arthur, Damon West was a golden boy, the quarterback for the Thomas Jefferson High School Yellow Jackets.
West wasn't the most gifted athlete his coach, Mike Owens, had ever seen.
...
During football season, Damon joined his dad on trips to cover the team, often handling the cord to Johnson's headset as the coach prowled the sidelines.
"That was a big deal for a kid - the camera zeroes in on the head coach, and there's Damon," his father said.
Johnson remembered Damon West as being "energetic, and a hard worker."
...
Damon played well enough as a high school junior that colleges from around the country began tracking his performance.
...
West received two scholarship offers, his dad said - from UNT, where Todd Dodge, another Jefferson High alumnus and now the Mean Green's head coach, was quarterback coach; and Southwest Texas State, now Texas State in San Marcos.
...
The brightest point came in September 1996, when West was named starting quarterback for UNT's game at Arizona State. He'd be going against ASU's heralded Jake "The Snake" Plummer. And in the week leading up to the game, he received an encouraging telegram from Johnson, then coaching the Miami Dolphins; and a fax from Turner, then head coach of the Washington Redskins.
Outmanned, UNT lost 52-7. West threw for a touchdown, but also tossed an interception that went for an Arizona State touchdown and lost a fumble, again returned for a touchdown.
The next week, he lasted only three plays against Texas A&M before separating his shoulder. Some months later, while rehabilitating that injury, West partially severed his Achilles tendon.
He'd never play football again.
And no longer under the scrutiny of his coaches, West gained a reputation as a hard-drinking party boy and a user of cocaine.
A student who knew West at UNT said that even then, West was prone to steal. While working at a menswear store in Grapevine, he'd stuff suits into a trash bag, toss it in the dumpster, then recover the bag when his shift ended, said the ex-student, who asked that his name not be used, fearing reprisals.
West would wear the suits himself, sell them or give them to friends.
But if West had alcohol or drug problems, some of those closest to him then say they never knew it.
Bill Michael, then an assistant football coach at UNT, said he'd be hard-pressed to believe anything negative about West during his playing days.
...
His first foray into the field came in 1998, in the Denton mayoral election, when businessman Scott Finfer hired West as his campaign manager.
...
"He seemed like a smart, nice kid," said Finfer, who hired West even before he'd graduated.
...
His parents separated when Damon was about 8, Crowder said, and his father left the family home.
...
"They had a very close bond then, but for Damon, there would have been a degree of lingering insecurity and wondering when the relationships might break apart again," he said. "Damon thought, 'If I can't perform for him, I really don't have a place in his life.' "
...
After graduating from the University of North Texas in 1999 with a degree in sociology, West went to Washington, D.C., working for a Democratic fundraising firm and for U.S. Rep.
...
Mauro first met West in 1991 in Port Arthur, at a roast for Jimmy Johnson organized by Bob West.
...
"To make a long story short, it was Damon and he wanted advice on Texas politics and getting involved.
"He wanted to come back to Texas and work on a presidential campaign. He said, 'Who are you working for?' and I told him Dick Gephardt. So he went and met Gephardt's people and came to work in Texas."
Mauro and West worked elbow-to-elbow in Mauro's home office for more than six months until Gephardt ended his campaign.
...
"Damon took on the role of father figure, mentor, and one night his brother got in trouble for partying too much and Damon got on him.
...
Damon drifted up to Dallas in 2004, bringing his methamphetamine habit with him. He told a former girlfriend that he started using the drug in Austin, after he returned to Texas from Washington.
When they met in 2007, he was still using.
...
"I'm not going to say Damon was a straight-arrow all of his life," Bob West said.
...
But about a year after Damon moved to Dallas, "we could tell that something was haywire," Bob West said.
...
"Damon is a very smart guy.
...
Authorities who have dealt with West since his arrest say that while drugs were a big part of his problem, a clean and sober West is still manipulative - and dangerous. They note that four months after his arrest, he was trying to persuade one of his brothers, who lives out of state, to come to Dallas, get some stolen goods out of a warehouse and take them to their parents' Port Arthur home.
And his former girlfriend said that authorities have taped phone calls West made to her from jail in which he told her not to talk to police or prosecutors about him and if she did, to lie.
"I've met a lot of the victims in this," she said, "and if I feel sorry for anyone, I feel sorry for them."
...
The ex-girlfriend thinks of a younger Damon, too.
He told her how his mother caught him having sex with his babysitter when he was 10 years old, and how, shortly thereafter, he turned to drugs and alcohol.
"I think he's still that 10-year-old kid who's suffering," she said.
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